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Madhya Pradesh: Six children killed but forest department remains apathetic to villagers woes

12:38 AM Oct 16, 2021 | FP News Service

Sardarpur (Madhya Pradesh): Six innocent children have become prey to the leopards prowling around the Amjheri forests within a year but forest authorities are yet to achieve any headway in capturing the big cats.

They have installed the ‘customary’ cages and cameras, again, after three days of the death of two-year-old on Tuesday.

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People in the tribal predominant area are in grief and panic over the deaths of kids.

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The forest rescue team laid traps, installed cages and cameras after each incident but has failed miserably so far.

Their action lacks consistency and they prefer returning back to the confines of their offices after 4-5 days of incident, said a local.

The negligence of the authorities raises several questions on their functioning as to why they have not taken any concrete steps.

For the administration the cost of the life of a child is Rs 4 lakh and it provide it to the aggrieved kin in the form of compensation, rued a villager.

Would the administration remain apathetic if the children from prosperous areas were dying due to leopard attacks instead of the children of the illiterate and poor tribal?, he added.

A former forest department official and regular reader of the Free Press expressed deep sorrow over the reports pf leopard attack and condemned authorities for the failure.

The Free Press journal prominently published these incidents on July 9, 2021, July 10, 2021, August 17, 2021 and October 14, 2021.

He said that the authorities wait for the death of the children before taking any strict action. He also suggested carrying out a continuous awareness campaign to save the children from the wild animals.

Forest Officer Mahesh Ahirwar said that 7-8 search teams have been constituted to catch the leopard. Six cages and 4 night vision cameras have been installed. A 12-member special rescue team from Indore are also carrying out an operation to capture the leopard soon.

Divisional forest officer Akshay Rathore was called twice but he did not take either of the calls.

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